Property investment company under fire for failure to provide payouts

Following an injection of over S$1 million from 2011 to 2014, five investors have filed police reports against A2A Capital Management...

A group of investors have filed police reports against A2A Capital Management, after they failed to receive investment returns in land-banking schemes.

Following an injection of over S$1 million from 2011 to 2014, five investors have filed police reports against A2A Capital Management, after they failed to receive returns for their investments in the company’s land-banking schemes, reported the Straits Times.

The property development and investment company’s land-banking schemes offered generous returns for cash investments in real estate in Canada and the US.

In fact, a brochure for one of the schemes in which property manager Veronica Chen invested showed that a total investment of US$91 million (S$127.6 million) has an estimated target return of US$122 million (S$171 million). This works out to an overall return of 134 percent for the project.

Chen, however, has not received any payout for the US$30,000 (S$42,063) she invested in the 10-year project in Texas.

Retiree Madam Mohamad received only one payment amounting to S$1,500 last year for her S$500,000 investment made between 2011 and 2014.

“I am very sad I may die before I get my money back. I’m 78. I had told my two grandchildren I can help pay for their studies but now I can’t help them,” she said.

Investor Vijay N, on the other hand, said the S$700 payout he received in the middle of 2016 was much lower than he had expected. The businessman invested S$50,000 in two projects in 2012 and 2013.

“I thought it was a good investment… I expected my first payment of the returns to be in 2014. When I didn’t receive anything, they told me the winter was bad,” said Mr N, who claimed to have been impressed by A2A’s marketing presentation and well-decorated office in Raffles Place. The company has since vacated its Raffles Place office and moved to the Philippines.

When contacted in February, A2A’s client services department explained to Mr N that the relocation of its office was the result of the Singapore authorities “putting regulatory impositions” on land-banking products.

It added that the management is working on the project’s payout timelines and would update the investors as soon as these are ironed out.

Meanwhile, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on 23 March placed A2A on its investor alert list as it “provides a listing of unregulated persons who, based on information received by MAS, may have been wrongly perceived as being licensed or authorised by MAS”.

 

Romesh Navaratnarajah, Senior Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email romesh@propertyguru.com.sg